Planning a new adventure is almost the most exciting part of the whole thing. I mean you get to google the place, read about all of its amazing attractions, watch tons of pretty photos with the hashtag on Instagram and so on. But apart from the fun parts about discovering and planning where to go and what to do, it is also quite important to check these things before leaving:
Visa – visa is different for every country and it all depends on your country’s and your destination country’s relations. If they’ve made a visa agreement, you can be lucky enough to get through the border without wasting time thinking about this little stamp in your passport but this doesn’t happen all the time. Especially China is a tricky place to go. So just remember to check the visa requirements for your destination beforehand and apply early if you need a visa.
Vaccine – I love traveling to Asia. I think mosquitoes love it too. They seem to be everywhere all the time in the hot and steamy weather of the Asian countries. To make sure you won’t suddenly become really sick, make sure you’ve checked out common diseases in the area, you’re going to (also if you know, there aren’t any mosquitoes around). Foreign diseases can screw up your body system so be aware before you get there. Also, always bring pills to stop diarrhea. I think that’s the most common problem for Western travelers coming to Asia, haha. Good luck!
Lonely Planet – Just the best book ever! I love this one because the book can tell me everything about everywhere, no matter where I want to go. When I’m stuck somewhere I just look it up in this book, and there’s always a solution to my problem. The smart thing is that you can buy Lonely Planet as an E-book as well, which makes it so much easier to bring around. I’m a big fan of paper books, so I usually buy the heavy book to put in my bookcase at home and then bring the E-book on my Ipad. Win win! (Why? Because I can show my friends where I’ve been but I don’t have to conquer mountains carrying three different travel books each 500 pages heavy, thank you e-book developer somewhere for that. It made my life much easier on the road).
Weather – My dad once told me how he went to Australia in March wearing his big winter coat because it was freezing in Denmark. When he arrived in the airport, the first thing the security guard said to him was something like ‘you need to buy new clothes fast, my friend’, with a smile of course. My dad realized the heat the moment he stepped out of the airport. But that was in those old days, now, we have internet and it’s easy to google weather it’s rain season, heat, winter, snowy and so on. So just to make sure, check it out before you pack all your sweaters for the Vietnamese summer or your summer dresses for Canadian minus degrees.
Prices – I don’t know about you but I love to have an idea of how much money I’ll be spending while traveling. Money is running fast out of your pocket while traveling the world so the best thing would be to check out the financial situation in the country/place you’re going to, check out some hostels/hotels and make some kind of plan about how much you’re approximately going to spend. It’s always nice to be able to afford a burger the last night in the airport or have enough cash to buy your mommy a lousy souvenir in one of the over-prized shops in your terminal before leaving, just saying, she would be happy (I should remember this for next time 😉 ).